A Disappointing Ending to a Previous Tale Plus a Happier Tale of a New Addition

For those of you who follow my blog, I am sorry to tell you that we had to return Greta, our rescue dog, back to her former foster mother. (Click HERE to read my previous post about Greta’s adoption). I was devastated. My kids were devastated. And my husband was devastated. But, it had to be done. We expected it would take time for Greta to adjust to our home and to trust us. The thing about rescue dogs is, you never know what they have been through. And, it saddens me that humans have made Greta the way she is. She’s an extremely loyal and loving companion, but I feel as if she suffers from PTSD. I have two young kids that are loud and wild. Kids that love to bang stuff and chase stuff. For five days, I loved on Greta. She even slept in the bed with us a couple of nights. SWEETEST THING IN THE WORLD. She was quiet for two days before her hound singing began. It was the cutest sight to see her singing. Just like a beagle. She was also a bit of a drama queen, but we found that trait to be one of her quirky charms. Greta was also horribly afraid of the dark. Something must have happened to her at night because she whimpered and yelped every time we tried to take her outside to potty. If you grabbed her collar, she would urinate a tiny puddle wherever she was standing or lying. We were warned about these quirks. She never urinated inside the house, but would hold it all night until early morning when she’d wake us up wimpering. So, we lured her and rewarded her with treats at night. It was like the movie Groundhog’s Day. During the day, she was great but at night she was high-maintence. She was a little scared of men, but would warm up to them the longer she was near them. Greta loved and trusted every single female that came over during that time. There were no signs of bad habits we couldn’t handle or break her of. She was needy, but loving.

On the fifth day, while my kids were napping, she also decided to take a nap on the couch. Since Great had arrived in our house, we had been cuddling with her and laying on the floor with her. Greta would even put half her body on our laps and lay down, if we were sitting on the floor. Like I was saying, though, I believe she has PTSD. While Greta was sleeping soundly on the couch one afternoon, Ricky walked over to her and began petting her. She immediately snapped and bit my husband’s hand. I knew he had probably just startled her, but her bite broke the skin. All my husband and I could think about the rest of that day was, what if one of the kids had been the one to pet her. If it were just Ricky and I living alone in our house, I know we could have broken her of that. She just needed some time to adjust and get to a point where she could trust us. However, since we have two small kids. We decided to make the right, but difficult, decision to return her. We thought it was best for our family. My son, Rush, had been scared of her and was upset we brought home a dog he couldn’t play with.  I cried the rest of the day and I cried the day she left. I loved Greta and am glad we could love on her for one whole week. She needs a home that is less chaotic. She needs an owner that can love on her all day and night. At least now, her foster mother will know a better fit for adoption. I’m confident she will find a home. She’s housebroken and so sweet. Just needs time and lovin’. I feel guilty, but rescue dogs need a perfect fit. It was a sad day and everyone was torn up and worn out from the emotional roller coaster we experienced that week. My husband decided to get a puppy that the kids could grow up with; and run around and play with. I was against the idea at first, but then I saw how sad my son was when Greta left (even tho he was scared of her). I’ll let these photographs speak for themselves because I do believe they clearly portray the love we have found for our new addition… Ash. He is a male, merle cocker spaniel that is nine weeks old. He was born a day before my birthday. He’s freaking adorable. He’ll chase after my son. I’ve never seen a bigger smile on my son’s face nor heard louder cackles, while he is being chased. I will, however, never forget Greta nor the joy she brought to my home. I wish her all the best and I’m going to keep checking PetFinder in hopes to read she’s found a home. He’s no rescue, but here is the Ash we have fallen for…

Ash in Light and Shadows. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches, 2012.

Look at Those Sweet Puppy Eyes. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches, 2012.

Ain’t Nothin’ Like the Puppy Life. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches.

Ash Eyes Flank a Blade of Grass and Reveal His Puppy Scale. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches, 2012.

A View of Ash’s Beautiful Merle Cocker Spaniel Coat. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 10 x 8 inches, 2012.

Slight Silhouette of a Black and Tan, Merle Puppy. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches, 2012.

Tan Fur for Brows and Curly Flops for Ears. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches, 2012.

Basking in the Sunlight on a Puppy Day. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches, 2012.

Ash’s Brow Resembles Another Set of Eyes When He Sleeps. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches, 2012.

Ash Loves to Snuggle Right on Your Shoulder. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches, 2012.

Handsome Ash Portrait and Disc Golf Basket Bokeh. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 10 x 8 inches, 2012.

9 Weeks Old and Lovin’ Life. Polly Nance. Digital photograph. 8 x 10 inches, 2012.




40 thoughts on “A Disappointing Ending to a Previous Tale Plus a Happier Tale of a New Addition

  1. Sigh…disappointing, indeed, but you gave it your all and I think, made a wise decision for your family. Greta needs a quieter home, perhaps one with all females. Funny, our cat Cleo (a rescue) used to be very afraid of men and has some issues with being alone at night (still, after 16 years). As far as I am concerned, anyone who is cruel to animals should be punished.

    Ash is adorable! Puppies are a riot and your kids will love watching him grow. Good luck!

    • I know… so disappointing. I was so certain it would work out because she was so sweet. So interesting about your cat… I hope Greta will be able to get over her fear of men. I know cats like to hold grudges for a LONG time. 😉 Cats are funny. Thanks so much for your feedback and so glad you enjoyed the photographs of our new puppy! 🙂

    • Yeah I did, but it was so hard. My son cried to me about Greta last night because he said he’s worried about her and her boo boos. Ha. So sweet. Glad he has a heart for animals too. Glad you like our lil puppy… he’s so cuddly and sweet right now. Just a lot more work than Greta 😉 Take care!

  2. I feel so sad for your family on losing Greta. We had the same thing happen a several years ago and had to return our new dog. It was hard but we were scared of him as he was biting/snapping more and more each day. Two years ago my son got a rescue dog, and today he is the happiest doggie with no long-lasting scars from his previous owner. It took time, but all of our love finally got through to him and his trust. Now he is my spoiled granddog! Poor rescue doggies, they are so fragile and scared, some having been through such terrible abuse and neglect. As cute & adorable as Ash is, I hope and pray he fills that sad void of the loss of Greta. Prayers too that Greta can find a home as you said and learn to live and love again as well.

    • Thank you so much for writing your experiences with rescue dogs. It helps to hear stories like that… ones with happy and sad endings. Glad your son’s dog worked out. I know Greta would have worked out if we had had no kids. I hope someone gives her a good home. Everyone I know has dogs or kids or doesn’t like dogs… but, I know there are plenty of folks in Atlanta that might be willing to give her a chance. Ash doesn’t fill the void but he makes it easier to get over. My son cried to me about Greta last night… said he was worried about her and her boo boos. SO sweet. At least she loves the woman that’s caring for her. The adoptions are every Saturday and Sunday… I might have to go visit her. Thanks for your comment and stories! Take care!

  3. I absolutely need to post photos of my Juliet who passed in September. She was a part of out family for 14 and 1/2 years. Your babe is her reincarnation. If you are are blessed by karma as we were your lives will be forever filed with love!

    • Yes please post photos! Let me know if you do! I’ve tried to google merle cocker spaniels and the ones i find aren’t near as pretty as Ash is. Perhaps I’m biased, but I think he has a unique and beautiful look. I’m dying to see your photographs! Juliet is an awesome name. How cool to both have been blessed by similar doggies with cool coats and big hearts. Ash is too sweet for his own good. Thank you for your comment! 🙂

  4. Howdy Polly –

    This is part of the reason we have rescue groups that do the best they can to make sure each dog is a good long term fit with the family. Returning to rescue is the best possible situation that will allow Greta to be placed in a home that will be the right fit for her. Maybe a home without a male around very much and no children. We all have our quirks just as Greta does. You did the right thing !

    • Thank you. Yeah… we were warned. Harriet, the rescue woman (ha don’t know how to refer to her), told us that we had to foster her for two weeks before we could officially adopt her. Smart. She warned us of her quirks too. You know, she warmed up to my husband. And, even after he bit her she felt guilty about it cause we put her in her crate and said bad dog, etc. She would lay outside the shower while my husband showered and whimper. She moved from being attached to me to him. However, we couldn’t have taken that chance with the kids. Loved her. Thank for your comment. It helps to hear words like this… telling me I did the right thing. I’m going to send the rescue woman some photographs I took of Greta without all the treatments… maybe that will help. Thank you and take care!

  5. thanks for liking my post today. i’ve enjoyed perusing your blog a bit. and i agree with those above, it was a tough choice, but as the mom of a 5 and 1/2 year old girl, i concur completely. still, ash looks like a sweetie. makes me have baby fever real bad. 🙂

    • Thank you. So glad you enjoyed my blog! It is a tough decision to return a dog… but you just can’t take chances with kids around. She never even thought about biting me. She was scared of the kids though. Ash is such a sweetie… still a baby! Curls up in a ball on my shoulder. Once we started looking around for puppies, he was hard to resist. Thank you for your comment and please come back again!

  6. aww such a sad story, its awful how some animals are treated she sounded like a sweet dog at heart.
    my brother in law got a rescue dog years ago, they already had a dog and were told this other one liked other pets but one day she attacked the other one and with a new baby in the house there was no hoice but for the dog to go back. 😦

    • She was a total sweetheart… just certain things would trigger her. So sad. I’m so sorry to hear about the sad ending to the story of your brother’s dog. Sometimes it’s just the right thing to do. And, at least we returned Greta to the rescue group instead of a shelter. My parents rescued a dog and she’s doing great. Liked to escape at first but now she doesn’t even try to run away. Just hates cats. Ha. Thanks for your comment 🙂

  7. I am sorry it did not work out. It made me sad to read about it. So sorry if I am intruding but all dogs are different in nature and some are more easy going than others, but for fact they are not human and their code of socializing are different. You might want to read some books about dogs and training dogs as some problems than arise sometimes are misconception. For what I read greta seemed to be “dominant” so for her she had the right to snap. Dogs have their own hierachy and it is our job as loving owner to tell them where they should stand to avoid problems ( it does not involve violence or bad thing at all!! and it is a loving thing to do) I might be wrong as i did not understand what you meant by PTSD but feel it was important to tell. I wish you good luck and lots of love with you puppy.

    • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder… she was a rescue dog and has had two former owner. Her first owner was an elderly man that had a bunch of dogs and must have abused her and not taken very good care of his dogs… dropped them all off at a shelter to be euthanized. Greta was pregnant at the time. I understand dogs very well… We had two and now have three. Like I said, I can’t take any chances with my kids being bitten. She needs the right home and even her foster mother, that saved her from being euthanized a second time, told us that our fostering her for a week helped her figure out what is going to be the best fit for Greta. She’s been through too much to just be good with any family. She needs a female with no other pets… she may be dominant I know but she has more issues than just that. And needs someone who will work with her and love on her. Thank you so much for your comment and feedback. I wish Greta would have worked out but she will find a good home in due time. I know it. She’s too sweet not to. 🙂

  8. I’m sorry Greta didn’t work out. My neighbor is going through something similar — she realized she and her son have allergies so they have to give up their new dog. I’m glad you have Ash, though — adorable!!

  9. I’m so sorry you had to return Greta, but I think it was the right choice given the circumstances.

    At the same time, I’m glad that you found Ash. He looks like one sweet puppy.

  10. Returning Greta may end up being a blessing to a senior citizen or some solitary soul, so I hope they find her a good match. It sounds like Ash is an ideal fit for your family. He may not be a rescue dog, but you never know… by adopting Ash, you may have prevented Ash from becoming a dog in need of rescue. The photos are adorable!

  11. Sorry things didn’t work out with Greta. You’re right – a perfect is needed, especially when the dog has had a bad experience elsewhere. You would never feel comfortable with Greta around your children. So you made the right decision. I also hope Greta finds a happy, loving, forever home.
    Ash is beautiful and I’m glad he’s getting along so well with your children.

  12. So sorry you had to send Greta back! I do understand. When we were looking for a male house rabbit to pair with our girl (not for breeding; house rabbits should always be paired up because they live longer and are happier), we brought home a gorgeous, loving black and white lop boy. He was enthusiastic about the pairing. The girl, whom we had already adopted, was emphatically not and took to hiding from us and him. We had to send him back and it was very hard. We did find a boy she could love, but Thumper is still in my heart and I was glad when he was adopted by a family with boys who could love him. I hope Greta gets what she needs. I’m proud of you and your family for making the decisions you did; I’m sure they’re the best in the situation.

  13. We ave always taken in discarded dogs. Dogs that for some reason were not wanted by their previous owners. Every one came with baggage. Luckily, we have never had to gig up one any but there were times. Our previous one, while small, has bite me a bizillion times in the first week. Luckily our son was grown and I was stubborn. The dog has now fit in, my scars have healed and we are all happy.

    • Bless you for being such a good person. If I didn’t have kids, I would have broken her of biting and snapping. Discarded dogs need lots and lots of love and I wish our home could have been a better fit for Greta. I don’t mind getting bitten because I know how to pull my hand away. My children would probably keep their hands there while she kept biting. I wish the best for her though. Thank you for taking the time to write a comment and for sharing your rescue stories. I’m glad to hear a happy ending to a rescue doggie tale. Thank you!

  14. Oh what a heart breaker! You are right that rescue dogs can be a full time job. Kudos to you for trying Polly and I hope Greta finds the right home.
    It looks like you now have a perfectly adorable match for your family! Best wishes!

  15. I felt so sad reading this :(…and then angry, how could someone treat a dog so badly for them to behave so fearful and traumatised?? You are a great person for trying and bringing her into your family! I have two rescue pugs and everyday they make me laugh, they surely give me more than I give them. All the best with Ash…he looks absolutely gorgeous…I’m sure your family fell in love at first sight…I did 😉 Hope that Greta finds a great home. Ash is lucky to have a family like yours!

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